Day Care

95 Franklin Street, Room 449
Buffalo, New York 14202

(716) 858-8953

Hours of Operation: 8:30 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.

Operations Update 3/20/20: The Day Care Unit has suspended in-person service due to the COVID-19 outbreak. Application packets and supporting documents can be mailed to Day Care Assistance, 95 Franklin St, Buffalo, NY 14202. Applications are available through the following links:

Operations Update 3/25/20: The Erie County Department of Social Services is expanding the child care services provided to children and families affected by COVID-19. The Office of Child and Family Services has granted Erie County the following waivers to help meet the needs of our community impacted by COVID-19 during the period March 19, 2020-April 30,2020 unless otherwise noted.
  • All child care subsidy redeterminations (recertification) will be extended an additional 30 days. This will allow families additional time to submit a completed recertification application and all the required verification.
  • The 35% Family Share is waived for those families impacted by COVID-19.
  • Erie County will make payments to child care providers and program types: (Day Care Center, Group Family, Family, Legally-Exempt Group and School Age Child Care) on behalf of a child who is temporarily absent from child care due to extenuating circumstances resulting from the child being quarantined due to the effects of COVID-19 for 30 days. 
  • Erie County will authorize child care services payments for eligible Temporary Assistance families during breaks in activities effective March 18, 2020-April 30, 2020 for families who have stopped work activities or employment as a result of COVID-19.
  • Effective April 1, 2020 Erie County will increase the maximum total number of allowable absences to a total of 30 absences  to all  child care providers and program types on behalf of an eligible  child who is temporarily absent from child care due to COVID-19.
Erie County Child Care Subsidy Program will expand eligibility standards to serve families with incomes up to 85% of the State Median Income (SMI).  The Workforce Development Institute’s (WDI) Child Care Facilitated Enrollment program will accept new applications in the range of 201% of FPL up to 85% of SMI.   (See chart).  Eligible families can be emailed an application by completing the WDI online prescreen here:

General Information

Low-income child care assistance is available to employed families who earn 200 percent or less of the Federal Poverty Level. Parents contribute toward the cost of care based on a sliding income scale.

After a complete case review and fiscal analysis, we are excited to announce that effective April 1, 2018 the Erie County Department of Social Services child care wait list was eliminated and all eligible families with incomes up to 200 percent of the Federal Poverty Level are able to submit a new application for child care subsidy. All parents are encouraged to submit all pending documentation and re-certification applications by the assigned due date, to ensure maintaining enrollment in the Child Care Subsidy Program.

Plans offered:

Child day care assistance is authorized for eligible individuals through a variety of programs outlined below. Each program determines method of payment, required paperwork and who to contact with questions and problems.

  • Temporary Assistance Child Care: is available to recipients of cash benefits who are also employed or engaged in an approved work activity, vocational or educational training program. Temporary Assistance recipients should contact their caseworker or employment counselor to discuss child care assistance eligibility.
  • Transitional Child Care Assistance: is available to recipients of Temporary Assistance who become ineligible for cash benefits due to earned income. Transitional Child Care is guaranteed for 12 months after case closing if the working family earns less than or equal to a designed percentage of the State Income Standard (which is based on the Federal Poverty Level and subject to change). Parents contribute to the cost of care according to a sliding scale based on their household income.
  • Non-Temporary Assistance Child Care (Subsidy Program): is available to working families who earn less than or equal to a designated percentage of the State Income Standard. Parents contribute to the cost of care according to a sliding scale. Assistance is also available to teen parents attending high school. For information about Non-Temporary Assistance Child Care, contact the Erie County Day Care Unit at (716) 858-8953 (TYKE). The Day Care Unit is located on the fourth floor of the Rath Building, Room 449, 95 Franklin Street, Buffalo NY 14202.
  • Preventive/Protective Services Child Care: is available to recipients of Children Services when child care is mandated as part of a family's service plan. For information about this type of child care, contact Children's Services at (716) 858-8349.

For information about child care eligibility, program requirements or questions regarding available providers, please call [716] 858-TYKE [858-8953]

Help Me Grow WNY

For more information on Help Me Grow WNY, Click Here. Help Me Grow WNY is an initiative aimed at linking families to information and community resources related to child development and parenting; as well as providing personalized service coordination; and creating and facilitating partnerships within the community to improve the availability and quality of services for families. 


Important Telephone Numbers:

Child Care Resource Network
100 Hertel Avenue
Buffalo, New York 14216
[716] 877-6666

NYS Office of Children and Family Services
Child Care Licensing and Information
295 Main Street
Buffalo, New York 14202
[716] 847-3828

Erie County Day Care Unit
95 Franklin Street, Room 448, Buffalo, New York 14202
[716] 858-8953

For Vendors seeking lost or stolen checks:
[716] 858-6676

Erie County Department of Contract Compliance
[716] 858-7203

More Information: